Happy New Year!

January 4, 2023 | Ed Scharringa

Happy New Year!

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in him.’” - Lamentations 3:22-24 (ESV)

As I was contemplating what to write for the winter edition of the magazine, I asked my 12 year old granddaughter, “What’s one to write for an opening to a new year article?” She said, “Papa, just write ‘HAPPY NEW YEAR’ in big black letters!”

As a new year has come, it can be exciting and yet overwhelming, especially during these uncertain times. Yet in the eyes of a child, not yet concerned about all the things we may find troubling, it’s a new year. Be happy, so to speak, as a child; one who doesn’t really worry about surrounding things yet. We must be reminded that God will be with us no matter what lies ahead. It’s good before we pick up the concerns of the day, the week, or this new year to reflect on the truths of God’s word, and what directives are given to us.

Sure, we have underlying anxieties that can worry us when we start contemplating them; that’s part of life for many of us. I believe the text from Lamentations is a good start to where we should find ourselves in this new year that is before us. The Lord is steadfast and loving.

We can use verses like James 1:17, that every good and perfect gift is given from above. Just think about it. We are given one of the oldest, most essential, and common-good occupations that can be had on this planet. Providing provisions of essentials necessary to human life. What a privilege. Working with the Creator’s creation in everyday life. That alone should be cause for each of us to see every day as a blessing in spite of what may challenge or encumber us.

Look forward to this new year. See where we can do good, make changes, and speak out where we see injustice or wrong directions. Be an encourager to the disheartened, bless the young person just beginning in life, and be an example that you have been blessed and that you are a blessing to others.

Our agricultural industry is full of challenges but also full of blessings. When we see that we can make differences in whatever path of life we find ourselves, that gives us hope and strength to go on. To be patient and trust in God, about feelings of uncertainty, that must be the basis.

I want to encourage everyone who reads this commentary to indeed have a Happy New Year. A blessed new year that will enable each of us to do what we love to do; be a working partner in God’s Creation… what a blessing when we take that to heart!

I close with a verse from Proverbs 3:5-6. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” (NIV)

Happy New Year and may God bless each of us as we go about life.

Ed Scharringa is Board of Directors President for the Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario. The CFFO Commentary represents the opinions of the writer and does not necessarily represent CFFO policy. The CFFO Commentary is heard on CFCO Chatham, CKXS Chatham, CKNX Wingham, and CHLP Listowel.